I was once dismissive of the attempts by amateur players to improve. To me it seemed too obvious – you either had it or you hadn’t. Talent was ultimately all that mattered. All my writing on chess was really for myself. If amateur players couldn’t follow, tough.
I don’t think that this dismissive attitude towards amateurs by professional chess players is particularly unusual. There is plenty of talk about ‘fish’, and in professional circles a general level of contempt is always on display. Perhaps we too easily forget that we were once ‘fish’ and ‘patzers’ ourselves, and are probably still viewed as such by even higher-rated players. It is only recently that I have started to think more along the lines of how amateur players approach chess, and the typical mistakes they make.